Monday, October 12, 2009

Capitalism: A Tough Love Story

In other news, I saw Michael Moore's new movie this weekend, and I have to admit it inspires the question: How could a successful person ever criticize the system that made him successful?™

Why, it's almost as if the man applied his cognitive powers while observing the plight of others, but failed to reach the entrepreneurial conclusion!

Of course, this is something that capitalism cannot explain, since in every foreclosure lies an opportunity -- not a sob story, Mr. Moore.


John O said...

Haven't seen it yet, but the inherent contradiction bothers me on its face, and the only thing keeping me in the Moore game is that in general, he gets it right.

I think M. Moore is rich, but I don't think he's The Man. Some people have souls, after all.

I myself make a good under-six-figure salary, but live within my means, and I've been hassling The Man since I was in 6th grade.

It can be done, and I like to think if I had Michael Moore dough I would be doing something similar. It's a stock joke of mine about our imaginary lottery-winnings: "I do believe I'd buy me a Senate seat."

Thanks for peaking in, LP. By the way, I seem to have a vestigial memory somewhere that you are in fact a male of the species. Can you let me know? I'd like to update your link.


JRB said...

Hey John,

Yes, I'm afraid I'm not a poor lady. That reference is actually from Francis of Assisi, an enterprising fellow in his own right.

I was being facetious about Moore, but I think my humor sucks in a way that will keep me busy for a long time. So it's win-win, really.

I'm all for hassling! Or at least aspiring to hassle so as to leave open the possibility of one day hassling. Keep up the good work.

Think Mps said...

I saw the movie and it was terrible. I'm not 100% sure what his message was, I think I actually agree with it, and because he is such an egotistical tool I found myself wishing him to be wrong.

Anonymous said...

John O, you are the man!

JRB said...

Think Mps,

It's good to hear a critical take on the film. Personally, I liked it. What did you think was terrible?

I don't know whether Moore is an egotistical tool or whether having corporate advertising and distribution contributes to the impression that he is an egotistical tool.

Justin said...

'lady' poverty,
I think Moore has as much as issued the challenge for people to quit watching movies and put him out of business. I don't really see his wealth and message as inherent contradictions - not sure how else he could go about the way things he does. It's like criticizing Noam Chomsky for having made a nice living at one of the leading institutions of the MIC (note: I have seen this criticism.)

There is a lot of 'I agree with Moore but not with how he packages his message and wishes he were wrong.' This criticism irritates me, if Moore made earnest, straight documentaries, I don't think they would be nearly as widely appreciated and viewed. I can think of about a half dozen powerful docs in the past few years that didn't reach nearly the audience Moore's docs have, Taxi to the Dark Side, Why We Fight?, The Fog of War etc. I guess it remains to be seen if exposure equates to people actually giving a damn to do something about, btw that is an issue that Moore has publicly registered frustration over.

(Also - I haven't seen Love Story yet. I personally don't care for Moore's docs, not because I find them badly made or boring, but a lot of the stuff he packs in is stuff that I pay attention to already so I don't feel like I am getting much information.)

Anonymous said...

I thought it was very uneven, very scattershot. Worse, I don't think Moore made a very good, systematic case -- not exactly an easy thing to do in a movie, granted. But he did a better job broaching the demon notion of socialism in 'sicko'.

And of course, just like every other Moore film I've seen, the audience was already on his side. Not his fault, of course...
-- sglover

Keifus said...

It's a good point. It's strange when managing to work up through the system teaches someone less empathy, but it seems pretty common. Maybe it matters where you start.